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Police Commission working on noise complaints, surveillance cameras

West Memphis officials considering body cameras for police officers

West Memphis officials considering body cameras for police officers

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West Memphis officials considering body cameras for police officers

By JOHN RECH

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West Memphis Police Commissioners aired noise complaints to Chief Eddie West on Tuesday. Police Commission chairwoman Lorraine Mohammed complained about loud music for the second straight meeting.

“I called the police four times,” said Mohamed. “They don’t come. I didn’t give my name because I wanted to see how they respond to calls. If I had given my name, I’m sure they would have come. The music went on past dark, past 10 p.m.”

Chief west took down the date and said he would look into it.

“All we can do is respond to calls as they come in,” said West.

Councilman Charles Wheeless complained about noise, though his concerns centered on motorcycle engines.

“It’s on Broadway mostly,” said West. “A group of them meet up at a car wash and we are on to that.”

West explained that while he understood the issue, there was little to do as many motorcycles come with factory- equipped loud muf_ers and not subject to any kind of enforcement. The chief had a personal example.

“I’ve got a ’95 Harley that came legally with drag pipes on it,” said West. “There is nothing you can do about it.”

Councilman James Holt took the meeting in a different direction. Holt wanted a surveillance camera in the Westwood Acres neighborhood to monitor illegal tire dumping. West said pole-mounted cameras cost about $6,500 each and shared his thoughts a higher- priority project aimed at ghting tire dumping would be three cameras along the South Loop corridor. Councilwoman Mohammed noted it was the second consecutive meeting that cameras had been discussed for South Loop with no progress. West laid it at the feet of city council.

“The only thing needed is funding for the cameras,” said West.

On the subject of cameras, Councilman Willis Mondy said he still wanted body cameras for police. Mondy had voiced the need for the cameras during a 2020 commission meeting.

“Cameras keep people from doing things they should not do,” said Mondy.

West said costs associated with equipping ofcers, administering video and acquiring a big enough server to store video had stalled a decision on body cameras. Mondy asked for specific cost estimates to move forward with body cameras. The chief promised to return with gures at the April police commission meeting.

Commissioners set their regular police meetings for rst Mondays each month at city hall going forward.

WEST

“I called the police four times. They don’t come. I didn’t give my name because I wanted to see how they respond to calls. If I had given my name, I’m sure they would have come. The music went on past dark, past 10 p.m.”

LORRAINE MOHAMMED

Police Commission chairwoman

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